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Are You Prepared for Disaster (Recovery)? | @DevOpsSummit #DevOps #Security

n this case, disaster means a ‘marginally-short-of-an-apocalypse' scale incident

Are You Prepared for Disaster (Recovery)?
By Tony Beeston

There's no escaping how essential IT has become to modern business; gone are the days where corporate life can continue without its IT systems. These days, across all industry sectors, critical business processes rely upon IT, and yet we're still being met by what feels like an age-old conundrum: what awaits us in the face of a disaster?

Just to be clear, when I say ‘disaster', I'm not talking about a situation that can be solved by the likes of high availability. In this case, disaster means a ‘marginally-short-of-an-apocalypse' scale incident. Simply load-balancing servers isn't going to solve this situation. Before you get too comfortable and tell yourself, "that sort of thing will never happen to me", I want to run some figures past you quickly, which have been compiled by IDG Group:

  • 42% of surveyed companies experienced a ‘catastrophe-marginally-short-of-an-apocalypse' event in the last year alone
  • 65% of firms are still relying on manual, human factors in their disaster recovery plans
  • 72% of companies only test their disaster recovery plan (DRP) once a year

So, how confident are you now that you won't experience the same sort of issue?

There's no accounting for the ‘when' or ‘why' once disaster strikes. It could be caused by human error, industrial sabotage, technological failure, or even an act of god - the root of the problem at this stage is irrelevant. As you know, businesses rely on IT implicitly, from communications to point of sale. In the immediate aftermath, the cause of the disaster is a secondary concern; your number one objective is simply how quickly you can get your systems back online and return to normal operations. What you need is solid, fool-proof DRP execution.

The Problems with Disaster Recovery
Historically, planning for disaster recovery (DR) has been problematic, to put it lightly. It's a time-consuming and costly process. A good DRP will work in tandem with an organization's business continuity plan. Critical processes, procedures and programs should be highlighted as such and each should be attributed a recovery time objective (RTO) and recovery point objects should be outlined. In conjunction with the business continuity plan, the DRP should indicate a timeframe for an expected return to operation, and herein lies one of our problems.

As our systems have become more complex, with ever increasing amounts of inter-dependencies, DR documentation has become unwieldly. So many systems are interconnected and dependent upon each other in manners previously unthought-of, deciding which systems are and are not critical is cumbersome. A good DRP should be brief and easy to understand. An epic, 400-page document is of no use to anyone, especially in the face of a real disaster - on the other hand, neither is a hastily scrawled note on the back of an envelope.

Moreover, DRPs should cover all eventualities, from major catastrophes like earthquakes and flooding, to smaller issues such as power failures.

Just as we have more and more interconnected systems, the state of IT today focuses on the ability to adapt and evolve at the drop of a hat. Such change must also be accounted for within your DR site and plan. However, just trying to keep up with all the changes, let alone document them is a logistical nightmare. How can you be sure all contingencies are accounted for?

However, having a DRP is but one step in the process. It's all well and good having an immaculate document but without ever putting it to the test, it's still only a theory. Periodically testing will enable you to understand how it will be executed. It will highlight previously undetected deficiencies you couldn't afford to discover in a real-case scenario.

Yet companies aren't testing their DRPs frequently enough. They're testing only once or twice a year, finding flaws and never really taking any proactive steps to rectify these. Many companies are still almost entirely reliant upon human factors and manual input, which introduce the very real possibility of errors occurring during a real DR situation.

FEMA has estimated that up to 40% of businesses won't return to operations after a disaster. Deficiencies in DRPs and testing methods play a big part in making up this number. Devising an efficient DR strategy is complicated, without a doubt. Luckily, when it comes to putting the plan into action, there's a more streamlined process.

The State of Disaster Recovery Today
Given enough time, everything evolves, including DR. While we used to rely upon manual implementation to facilitate and action disaster recovery plans, that doesn't have to be the case anymore. Like any repeatable, systematic action, we've devised automation processes to remove the element of human error.

Automating your DRP ensures that every time you execute (real or test), the same actions will run in the same order and the same checks will be initiated. Automating your DRP removes variables from the equation. You're no longer reliant upon human factors, factors which could fail under the pressure of a real implementation. An automated system ensures the people involved in the process cannot make an error. Your DR is now entirely auditable and consistent, delivering proof of capability which can be easily documented. System upgrades and additions can quickly be added to your workflow, meaning you don't have to worry about overlooking potentially business-critical system dependencies.

The biggest advantage of an automated approach is it enables us to test near-enough at will. Being able to drill so easily and quickly provides the peace of mind that if a ‘catastrophe-marginally-short-of-an-apocalypse' event does impact us, we're not going to be met with any unaccounted-for surprises in our fail-over procedures.

Of course, some manual sanity checks will still need to be implemented, but with an automated system human involvement has been minimized as much as possible. Without the reliance upon manual procedures, automation and modern virtualization techniques mean businesses can be back and operational within minutes, rather than hours or days. It gives us the confidence that a disaster will not compromise our business. Does your DRP promise that?

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DevOps at Cloud Expo taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world.

Must Watch Video: Recap of @DevOpsSummit New York Javits Center

The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.

Nutanix DevOps Booth at @DevOpsSummit New York Javits Center

DevOps at Cloud Expo will expand the DevOps community, enable a wide sharing of knowledge, and educate delegates and technology providers alike. Recent research has shown that DevOps dramatically reduces development time, the amount of enterprise IT professionals put out fires, and support time generally. Time spent on infrastructure development is significantly increased, and DevOps practitioners report more software releases and higher quality. Sponsors of DevOps at Cloud Expo will benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities through:

  • Featured on-site presentation and ongoing on-demand webcast exposure to a captive audience of industry decision-makers.
  • Showcase exhibition during our new extended dedicated expo hours
  • Breakout Session Priority scheduling for Sponsors that have been guaranteed a 35 minute technical session
  • Online advertising in SYS-CON's i-Technology Publications
  • Capitalize on our Comprehensive Marketing efforts leading up to the show with print mailings, e-newsletters and extensive online media coverage.
  • Unprecedented PR Coverage: Editorial Coverage on DevOps Journal
  • Tweetup to over 75,000 plus followers
  • Press releases sent on major wire services to over 500 industry analysts.

For more information on sponsorship, exhibit, and keynote opportunities, contact Carmen Gonzalez by email at events (at) sys-con.com, or by phone 201 802-3021.

Most Popular Video: Sheng Liang's Containers Talk

@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and is co-located with the 21st International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world.

@DevOpsSummit 2017 Silicon Valley
(October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA)

@DevOpsSummit 2018 New York 
(June 12-14, 2018, Javits Center, Manhattan)

With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend 21st Cloud Expo, October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-14, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.

Track 1. Enterprise Cloud | Cloud-Native
Track 2.
Big Data | Analytics
Track 3. Internet of Things | IIoT | Smart Cities

Track 4. DevOps | Digital Transformation (DX)

Track 5. APIs | Cloud Security | Mobility

Track 6.
AI | ML | DL | Cognitive
Track 7.
Containers | Microservices | Serverless
Track 8. FinTech | InsurTech | Token Economy

Speaking Opportunities

The upcoming 21st International @CloudExpo@ThingsExpo, October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-14, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY announces that its Call For Papers for speaking opportunities is open. Themes and topics to be discussed include:

  • Agile
  • API management
  • APM
  • Application delivery
  • Cloud development
  • Configuration automation
  • Containers
  • Continuous delivery
  • Continuous integration
  • Continuous testing
  • DevOps anti-patterns
  • DevOps for legacy systems
  • DevOps skills and training
  • DevOps system architecture
  • Docker
  • Enterprise DevOps
  • Identity and access
  • IT orchestration
  • Kubernetes
  • Load testing
  • Microservices
  • Mobile DevOps
  • Monitoring
  • Network automation
  • Quality assurance
  • Release automation
  • Serverless
  • Scrum
  • Service virtualization
  • Teaming
  • Test automation
  • WebOps, CloudOps, ChatOps, NoOps

Submit your speaking proposal today! ▸ Here

Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo 2017 Silicon Valley
(October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA)

Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo 2018 New York 
(June 12-14, 2018, Javits Center, Manhattan)

Download Show Prospectus ▸ Here

Every Global 2000 enterprise in the world is now integrating cloud computing in some form into its IT development and operations. Midsize and small businesses are also migrating to the cloud in increasing numbers.  

Companies are each developing their unique mix of cloud technologies and services, forming multi-cloud and hybrid cloud architectures and deployments across all major industries. Cloud-driven thinking has become the norm in financial services, manufacturing, telco, healthcare, transportation, energy, media, entertainment, retail and other consumer industries, and the public sector.

Cloud Expo is the single show where technology buyers and vendors can meet to experience and discus cloud computing and all that it entails. Sponsors of Cloud Expo will benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities through:

  • Featured on-site presentation and ongoing on-demand webcast exposure to a captive audience of industry decision-makers.
  • Showcase exhibition during our new extended dedicated expo hours
  • Breakout Session Priority scheduling for Sponsors that have been guaranteed a 35-minute technical session
  • Online advertising in SYS-CON's i-Technology Publications
  • Capitalize on our Comprehensive Marketing efforts leading up to the show with print mailings, e-newsletters and extensive online media coverage.
  • Unprecedented PR Coverage: Editorial Coverage on Cloud Computing Journal.
  • Tweetup to over 75,000 plus followers
  • Press releases sent on major wire services to over 500 industry analysts.

For more information on sponsorship, exhibit, and keynote opportunities, contact Carmen Gonzalez by email at events (at) sys-con.com, or by phone 201 802-3021.

The World's Largest "Cloud Digital Transformation" Event

@CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo 2017 Silicon Valley
(Oct. 31 - Nov. 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA)

@CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo 2018 New York 
(June 12-14, 2018, Javits Center, Manhattan)

Full Conference Registration Gold Pass and Exhibit Hall ▸ Here

Register For @CloudExpo ▸ Here via EventBrite

Register For @ThingsExpo ▸ Here via EventBrite

Register For @DevOpsSummit ▸ Here via EventBrite

Sponsorship Opportunities

Sponsors of Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo will benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities through:

  • Featured on-site presentation and ongoing on-demand webcast exposure to a captive audience of industry decision-makers
  • Showcase exhibition during our new extended dedicated expo hours
  • Breakout Session Priority scheduling for Sponsors that have been guaranteed a 35 minute technical session
  • Online targeted advertising in SYS-CON's i-Technology Publications
  • Capitalize on our Comprehensive Marketing efforts leading up to the show with print mailings, e-newsletters and extensive online media coverage
  • Unprecedented Marketing Coverage: Editorial Coverage on ITweetup to over 100,000 plus followers, press releases sent on major wire services to over 500 industry analysts

For more information on sponsorship, exhibit, and keynote opportunities, contact Carmen Gonzalez (@GonzalezCarmen) today by email at events (at) sys-con.com, or by phone 201 802-3021.

Secrets of Sponsors and Exhibitors ▸ Here
Secrets of Cloud Expo Speakers ▸ Here

All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades.

With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo@ThingsExpo, October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-4, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.

Delegates to Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo will be able to attend 8 simultaneous, information-packed education tracks.

There are over 120 breakout sessions in all, with Keynotes, General Sessions, and Power Panels adding to three days of incredibly rich presentations and content.

Join Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo conference chair Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040), October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-14, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, for three days of intense Enterprise Cloud and 'Digital Transformation' discussion and focus, including Big Data's indispensable role in IoT, Smart Grids and (IIoT) Industrial Internet of Things, Wearables and Consumer IoT, as well as (new) Digital Transformation in Vertical Markets.

Financial Technology - or FinTech - Is Now Part of the @CloudExpo Program!

Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 21st Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-14, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech, which will incorporate machine learning, artificial intelligence, deep learning, and blockchain into one track.

Financial enterprises in New York City, London, Singapore, and other world financial capitals are embracing a new generation of smart, automated FinTech that eliminates many cumbersome, slow, and expensive intermediate processes from their businesses.

FinTech brings efficiency as well as the ability to deliver new services and a much improved customer experience throughout the global financial services industry. FinTech is a natural fit with cloud computing, as new services are quickly developed, deployed, and scaled on public, private, and hybrid clouds.

More than US$20 billion in venture capital is being invested in FinTech this year. @CloudExpo is pleased to bring you the latest FinTech developments as an integral part of our program, starting at the 21st International Cloud Expo October 31 - November 2, 2017 in Silicon Valley, and June 12-14, 2018, in New York City.

@CloudExpo is accepting submissions for this new track, so please visit www.CloudComputingExpo.com for the latest information.

About SYS-CON Media & Events

SYS-CON Media (www.sys-con.com) has since 1994 been connecting technology companies and customers through a comprehensive content stream - featuring over forty focused subject areas, from Cloud Computing to Web Security - interwoven with market-leading full-scale conferences produced by SYS-CON Events. The company's internationally recognized brands include among others Cloud Expo® (@CloudExpo), Big Data Expo® (@BigDataExpo), DevOps Summit (@DevOpsSummit), @ThingsExpo® (@ThingsExpo), Containers Expo (@ContainersExpo) and Microservices Expo (@MicroservicesE).

Cloud Expo®, Big Data Expo® and @ThingsExpo® are registered trademarks of Cloud Expo, Inc., a SYS-CON Events company.

More Stories By Automic Blog

Automic, a leader in business automation, helps enterprises drive competitive advantage by automating their IT factory - from on-premise to the Cloud, Big Data and the Internet of Things.

With offices across North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific, Automic powers over 2,600 customers including Bosch, PSA, BT, Carphone Warehouse, Deutsche Post, Societe Generale, TUI and Swisscom. The company is privately held by EQT. More information can be found at www.automic.com.

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